The legendary carmaker Toyota has collaborated with the Japanese Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA) to create a fuel cell-powered lunar rover. The rover, which is at a conceptual stage now, is scheduled to go on a mission to the moon in 2029 and is touted to revolutionize lunar travel.
Fuel cell-powered electric vehicles are more effective for such travels than battery operated ones because they can travel much farther than battery operated vehicles before having to be recharged. This proposed model is also a huge improvement over NASA’s earlier battery operated spacecraft to the moon.
“Manned, pressurized rovers will be an important element supporting human lunar exploration, which we envision will take place in the 2030s,” Koichi Wakata, vice-president of the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA), said in a written statement.
This self-driving six-wheeled lunar rover will be able to accommodate two people or four in case of emergencies. Its cruising range will be over 6,200 miles. In terms of its size, it will be six metres in length, roughly the size of two minibuses, 17 feet wide and 12 feet tall. Remarkably, this pressurized lunar rover will enable astronauts to travel to space without space suits and conventional helmets.
Japan has been investing heavily in lunar travel in the past few years. Only three nations – Russia, the United States of America, and China, have successfully landed their spacecraft on the moon.
What do you think about this innovative moon buggy? Do you think moon travels will see a massive change because of it? Do let us know your thoughts in the comments section below.